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Lessons from Web 2.0 Expo 2009

New York City

I just returned from Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco. I heard several talks on social media strategies. One excellent presentation from an executive at LinkedIn discussed suggestions for creating a social network.

The most successful social networks start with a simple concept--one or two activities in which members can participate. For example, Flickr--posting or viewing pictures, UTube--posting or viewing videos, Facebook--posting pictures, LinkedIn--connecting to other people etc.

Along those lines, the speaker recommended that any social entrepreneur begin by considering the following:

1) Audience: Who are and why would they want to participate in the community?

2) Theme: What is the focus of the site?

3) Objects: By objects I mean what members should act on... video, photos, stories etc.

4) Activities: What are the actions that members take with each of the above objects? Examples can include: sharing, posting, viewing, forwarding etc.

By beginning with a clear audience and simple activities, the site will have the best chance of building an initial following of devotees.

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